Camilla Lacey

Along the Mole Gap Trail…

Former home of novelist Fanny Burney

Immediately adjacent to Westhumble Chapel is a decorative entrance to a private drive named Camilla Lacey. On it is placed a blue plaque to Fanny (Frances) Burney. She was a popular novelist of the late 18th Century and early 19th Century, but her own life was as interesting as the fictional dramas in her novels. She wrote social satires based on her own acute observations of life in late 18th Century England. At the age of 41 she met a French émigré, General Alexander d’Arblay, a refugee from the French Revolution, who was staying at Juniper Hall in Mickleham. They fell in love, married at the church in Mickleham and settled on a plot of land donated by their friend and the owner of the Norbury Park Estate, William Lock. The house was called Camilla Cottage and was funded from the sale of one of her novels: ‘Camilla’.